Our freezer is small…not hardly big enough to store the everyday items that have to be stored there. So we recently purchased this small chest freezer (using ebates we even got $ back!) to start storing more items, but also to be able to buy in bulk when needed. So I though I’d share with you the five essentials I buy in bulk and freeze…always!
MEAT: The first and most obvious is meat. I am sure most people do this, but we actually purchased a small outdoor chest freezer so we could stock up a little more on sales.
- Beef- ground, roast, steaks. I will cut a larger roast in two since we usually don’t need that big of a roast for just the four of us.
- Chicken-whole chickens, breasts- if purchased fresh we repackage in freezer bags with two breast each.
- Bacon- this is a great one if you can get it on sale! It’s generally expensive, if we find it on sale, I stock up, if not I buy Costco- usually a 4-pack for about $16.
BUTTER: We use real butter, by the stick! So I always buy a 4-pack at Costco or again stock up on sale and freeze them. We keep one box (4 cubes) in the fridge and everything else in the freezer.
BREAD: I basically store our bread in the freezer, with the exception of our sandwich bread because we go through it too quickly. Sourdough, hot dog buns, hamburger buns are all breads we eat occasionally and don’t usually go through the whole package (we don’t need 8 buns for 4 people!). So those breads are stored in the freezer- I take out the pieces that we need and cook them as I need, usually broiling or toasting. For thawing our sandwich bread I have never had an issue with it being soggy. I take out the whole loaf and set it on the counter until it’s thawed, that’s it!
MILK: We go through milk like crazy! We purchase 3 Costco packs, which is actually 6 gallons of milk every two weeks. We don’t have an outdoor fridge and I would hate for all of that milk to go bad. For a while, we would open the gallon, poor a little out, then freeze it, but when it thawed it smelled sour. It wasn’t, it tasted fine- but something about the milkfat being exposed and frozen made it stink and separate- we always had to make sure it was shaken before pouring. Then we just decided to freeze it completely unopened and it worked perfect. It expanded a bit, but just enough to pop out the plastic circle on the side of the container.
CHEESE: We buy bulk blocks on sale or from Costco, cut them into slices and freeze them. We also buy bulk preshredded cheese for casseroles, nachos, pizza, etc.
I make sure to freeze fruits and veggies before they go bad. Strawberries, Bananas, Blueberries, Grapes (we eat these frozen), Peaches, Nectarines and broccoli, green beans, carrots, etc. I have a big bag of frozen fruit for smoothies. I just cut up the fruit into pieces before spoilage and throw it in the bag. With veggies I cut them as well but store them in their own freezer bag.
Also, before I had both girls I made a big batch of freezer meals, but don’t generally do that just cause we don’t have the room. If I am making soup I almost always make a double batch and freeze the other half.
What do you freeze for food storage?